5 Books I’m Excited to Read in 2021 + Updates

It is finally 2021! I’m extremely excited for this year. Much like everyone’s 2020, mine didn’t go as well as expected. Aside from having online classes and having to stay at home all the time because of a pandemic, most of my days were spent watching movies and tv shows on Netflix and Youtube (I’ve watched so many good shows, I’ll probably write a blog post on that soon).

My initial reading goal for 2020 was to read 24 books. I intended to spend time on creating my portfolio (which I’ve yet to begin and will have to look for an internship in the later half of the year or the next), hence I thought 24 books would be reasonable, it is only 2 books a month after all. That was a huge oversight. I was speed reading the last 30 pages of my 14th book an hour before the New Year began.

This year, I’m still keeping my goal of 24 books. It might be a bad idea, but I think I can do it. I’m kinda getting the hang of online classes and so far in 2021, I’ve been reading almost every day! I’m feeling rather positive about hitting my goal.

Note: Yes, I did a post like this one last year. No, I didn’t even read any of the books on that list. Yes, I do not learn from my mistakes.


  1. What They Didn’t Teach You in Design School by Phil Cleaver

This is a book that will be crucial for me to read. I’ve found out about this through a classmate, who referenced it in her assignment and I had to get my hands on a copy too. I’m currently 50 pages into it and it is really helpful to me, especially since I’m applying for an internship this year.

I’ve read a book similar to this, What They Didn’t Teach You in Art School, but it focuses more on artists and exhibitions and not design like what I’m currently studying. I definitely recommend it if you are interested in learning more about how art exhibitions and galleries run.

2. Lullaby of the Universe by Anastasia Bell

I remember seeing this book on Bookstagram a few years ago and wanted to read it ever since. Somehow, I’ve won myself a copy when the author was doing a giveaway on Twitter last year so I’m thrilled to be able to read it!

3. WYRD: The Wild & Weird Adventures of A + B, Part 1: Japan by Sasha Borya

This is a book that was given by the author in 2019 which I am half regretfully only reading now. I feel awful about getting back to them so late, with the pandemic and the urge to be anywhere but where I am now, reading a book about the couple’s adventure in Japan feels like a great escape.

They also have a book on their trip to South and North Korea, and another one about Singapore and Malaysia! As a Malaysian, I’m really excited to hear about what tourists and travellers think about my country and what were their experiences. So far, I’m almost halfway through the book and really don’t want it to end.

4. A-Z Great Modern Writers by Andy Tuohy and Caroline Taggart

It’s the mix of knowledge, literature and art that made me curious about this book. I’ve always been fascinated by lists where others would write about the ’50 books that you need to read before you die’ or ‘greatest books in history’ and this feels like a good mix, accompanied by the beautiful (yet slightly scary, since they are just staring straight into my eyes) illustrations.

5. Sleeping Murder by Agatha Christie

I remember reading my first Christie novel in 2019 while I was working as an intern. (Now that I’m thinking about it, I think I read another Christie mystery last year so maybe I’ll be reading an Agatha Christie book once a year. If I can control myself.)

The pandemic has made me realised how much I enjoyed watching crime and mysteries. I’ve spent so much time on Netflix that I’ve made my subscription worth it. I’m really hoping to read a few mysteries this year and I know that Christie never disappoints, so why not begin from there?


Aside from all these mentioned, there are a few more books that were sent as a review request that I’m excited to read. For some strange reason, I’ve received a sudden influx of poetry to review, which I’ve already had a ton of prior to this. It’s very likely that I’ll be reading a collection a month, in order to get through my terrifyingly large stack of books.

There’s many other ways to say this but I’m just excited. To read, to watch movies, to learn, there’s so many things I’m excited for and looking forward to this year. Perhaps it is just the January hopefulness and positivity speaking but I’ll try to make the most out of it.

So what are you excited to read this year?

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